A few days ago I wanted to verify that a simple multipart html/text mail I was about to send would render correctly in different mail clients. Does anyone know how to let Mail.app under Mavericks show the plain text alternative for an email? It used to be an option in the menus in previous releases, but now it seems to be gone.

  • View raw is not a solution for examining multi-part/alternative emails. There is nothing faulty about using base64 for the Content-Transfer-Encoding, and in these cases there will be nothing to look at in raw except for a long string of characters. As a developer, like Asmus, it's quite annoying that mail.app no longer supports an 'alternative' renderer. Instead, I've had to switch to gmail. In gmail, I can use the "Message text garbled?" Menu option to see the plain-text alternative. Apple, heads up. You don't want people to have to switch to gmail.
    – user79189
    May 28, 2014 at 10:09

1 Answer 1


Apparently there is no way to do this with mavericks' Mail.app.

The option in the menu is gone and setting it by hard in the plist file doesn't seem to work anymore either, according to this post and this post.

Unfortunately you have to switch to a different mail client if you want to have proper multi-format support.

Or, for testing purposes, you could just send you the email in plain text and see how it looks and then verify that both parts are present by looking at the raw mail text (which Mail.app still lets you do).

  • That is not correct. Try using Raw in View message.
    – Ruskes
    Apr 30, 2014 at 19:09
  • 4
    Raw is in general cannot be used for seeing Rendering. Anything other than ascii (that means all accents, all smart punctuation, all emoji) will be encoded as base64 or quoted printable. Apr 30, 2014 at 19:43
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    No. The plain text version should always convert any content transfer encoding to the proper characters for display, so you see the accents, smart quotes, and emoji. Plain text is not the same as ascii -- it just means that no styling (fontface, fontsize, color, etc) info is provided inside the message. That is provided instead by the default settings of the reader. Apr 30, 2014 at 19:56
  • 1
    Yes, if you send yourself an email with the single word "resumé" and look at its raw source, you can see that it's not useful for knowing how the reader will see it. May 1, 2014 at 2:54
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    Apparently you're right, unfortunately. Seems this is not going to be fixed (ever..) so I'll accept this answer.
    – Asmus
    May 29, 2014 at 10:48

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